Much attention is being given to the impacts the conflict in Ukraine and the US sanctions on Russia will have on our food supply this year, but farmer Jim Goodman, president of the National Family Farm Coalition, explains why our food system has been in crisis for a long time. Goodman discusses how the causes of the broken food system – corporatization, consolidation, a rigid supply chain and the climate crisis – are all coming together to make farmers reconsider whether it even makes sense to plant crops. He also explains that farmers could feed the world in ways that are good for our health and for the planet, but this requires returning control to the small farmers and communities throughout the world.
Jim Goodman and his wife Rebecca ran a 45-cow organic dairy and direct market beef farm in southwest Wisconsin for 40 years. His farming roots trace back to his great-grandparents immigration from Ireland during the famine and the farm’s original purchase in 1848. A farm activist, Jim credits more than 150 years of failed farm and social policy as his motivation to advocate for a farmer-controlled consumer-oriented food system. Currently he serves as a board member of Midwest Environmental Advocates and the Family Farm Defenders.
Jim is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Platteville with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Science. He also holds a Masters Degree in Reproductive Physiology from South Dakota State University.